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Old 07-28-2017, 06:29 AM   #1
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Does a Diesel engine use any oil between changes

My Silverado has 115,000 miles and I have noticed the dmax uses a little oil. Is that okay or is it a sign for me to trade it
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Old 07-28-2017, 06:45 AM   #2
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What are your oil change intervals? Do you use 5w40 synthetic? How much oil is used in that interval? Have you replaced the air filter?
Extended intervals, clogged air cleaner, and a failed turbo seal can all cause oil consumption. In a 5,000mi interval .5 to 1 qt can be expected depending on use.
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Old 07-28-2017, 06:55 AM   #3
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2006 Dodge Diesel with 200K+ mile....Zero oil use....But then again, it's a Cummins.......Inline, 4 stroke, 6 cylinders are inherently stable and usually will afford better durability than a V8......
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Old 07-28-2017, 07:15 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by RB19RR View Post
2006 Dodge Diesel with 200K+ mile....Zero oil use....But then again, it's a Cummins.......Inline, 4 stroke, 6 cylinders are inherently stable and usually will afford better durability than a V8......
Probability of "Zero usage" is extremely low due to a very thin film of oil that gets burn off from the cylinder on every power stroke of the engine. The only way on some engines, you would have to measure exactly how much went in...to how much came out. Wouldn't be surprised to see a 1/4 of a gt. difference every oil change...some will burn a full qt.
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Old 07-28-2017, 07:26 AM   #5
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My Duramax never gets low on oil but I also never measure whats coming out and compare it to whats going in . Im sure it uses some but when you have 2.5 gallons of oil in the crank case losing a quart is like nothing .lol Id say a little bit of oil consumption is pretty normal .
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Old 07-28-2017, 07:29 AM   #6
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Probability of "Zero usage" is extremely low due to a very thin film of oil that gets burn off from the cylinder on every power stroke of the engine.
True....Never measured it, but just about fills the two jugs plus a bit of a quart the new oil came in.

Rotella synthetic every 10-12k miles.
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Old 07-28-2017, 07:57 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by 05CrewDually View Post
What are your oil change intervals? Do you use 5w40 synthetic? How much oil is used in that interval? Have you replaced the air filter?
Extended intervals, clogged air cleaner, and a failed turbo seal can all cause oil consumption. In a 5,000mi interval .5 to 1 qt can be expected depending on use.


How often should the air filter be changed? I use synthetic oil, always have
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:01 AM   #8
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All engines use some oil, just some more than others.
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:03 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by spock123 View Post
My Silverado has 115,000 miles and I have noticed the dmax uses a little oil. Is that okay or is it a sign for me to trade it
Define a little. The only time I ever topped off mine was once, about 1/2 to 1 quart, wasted my time.
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:12 AM   #10
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It really depends on the use and if ran in dusty conditions. If you have the original filter with 50 or 100 thousand miles I'd say it's time. Lol
Many trucks now a days have a filter minder that if the filter is getting clogged it will show on the gauge.
Click image for larger version

Name:	FilterMinder_06OCT15_zpsih65itmg.jpg
Views:	136
Size:	65.3 KB
ID:	146335
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:14 AM   #11
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Define a little. The only time I ever topped off mine was once, about 1/2 to 1 quart, wasted my time.


About 1/2 to a quart. It's only when pulling the camper that I have noticed it
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:20 AM   #12
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I'd hazard a guess that most oil "usage" in a diesel is from oil in blowby gases in the PCV system. My provent 200 on one of my diesels fills up with almost 8 oz of oil every 5k miles.

When towing, boost and combustion pressures are higher resulting in more blowby which contains oil droplets.

I usually lose 1/3-3/4 quart between 10k mile oil change intervals on my diesels and most of that is accounted for in the crankcase ventilation "catch can".
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:20 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by spock123 View Post
About 1/2 to a quart. It's only when pulling the camper that I have noticed it
If that's over a 3-5000mi interval you're fine.
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:22 AM   #14
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Yes, diesels will consume some oil. The PCV system mandates that oily vapor from the crank-case gets consumed. It's when they start gaining oil that things are going bad. Usually means a bad injector is allowing fuel in to the engine oil, diluting it.

My current 2007 Toyota Rav4 is actually under recall for excessive oil use. It takes a quart every other fill up. (Maybe 650 miles) that seem like a lot, but I'm hear to tell you that little engine runs like a dream at 230K miles. I have always held that once and engine starts burning a little oil, it will last a long long time. Everything in the top end is getting well lubricated.

I wouldnt sweat it.

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Old 07-28-2017, 08:28 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by 05CrewDually View Post
It really depends on the use and if ran in dusty conditions. If you have the original filter with 50 or 100 thousand miles I'd say it's time. Lol
Many trucks now a days have a filter minder that if the filter is getting clogged it will show on the gauge.
Attachment 146335
I have seen a lot of dirty filters with these "consumer feel good" indicators not showing it's time to change. With that being said it will open up the whole debate of a partially loaded filter stops more dirt than a new one due to the restriction and smaller passages. I would still bang it out on a bench.
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:32 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by spock123 View Post
About 1/2 to a quart. It's only when pulling the camper that I have noticed it
Don't sweat it. Remember your engine holds 10 quarts.
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:43 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by spock123 View Post
My Silverado has 115,000 miles and I have noticed the dmax uses a little oil. Is that okay or is it a sign for me to trade it
Wait a minute, it's a 2012 3500HD SRW? Yeah, those things are known for oil consumption, where did you say you would trade it in? I'll meet you there!
By the way, what color is it?


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Old 07-28-2017, 08:51 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Crusadernoob View Post
I have seen a lot of dirty filters with these "consumer feel good" indicators not showing it's time to change. With that being said it will open up the whole debate of a partially loaded filter stops more dirt than a new one due to the restriction and smaller passages. I would still bang it out on a bench.
I agree with banging it out on the bench to feel better but the indicators are used commercially in the diesel industry for a long time. As long as they're not cracked they do work.

The point of me mentioning air filter to start with is because if it is clogged the engine will start eating oil through the crankcase ventilation, turbo seal, ect.
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Old 07-28-2017, 09:23 AM   #19
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Measuring drained oil not necessarily accurate

I have owned diesel powered trucks since 1984 and if you are comparing oil in versus oil out you could have more coming out than went in. The reason is that the oil can be diluted by diesel fuel. My Dodge uses less than a half quart in 3500 miles. Never had to add oil between changes.

You might want to consider a oil analysis to see if the oil change interval can be extended or to let you know if the engine is tearing itself apart. The kits are about $25 and available in various places.
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Old 07-28-2017, 09:39 AM   #20
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How often should the air filter be changed? I use synthetic oil, always have
According to this schedule from Chevrolet every 45000 miles or 4 years, which ever occurs first....
https://my.chevrolet.com/content/dam...o%203500HD.pdf
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